Here are the most frequently asked questions we've received from self-employed clients in June 2022, with answers from the experts at Orange Genie Accountancy:
Can I claim a set amount for subsistence each time I travel whilst completing my contract?
Yes. You can claim the actual amount spent or alternatively a “scale rate” set by HMRC. As long as you are travelling to a temporary place of work on a journey that is not substantially ordinary commuting you can claim subsistence where you have been absent from your normal place of work or home for a continuous period in excess of five hours or ten hours. You must have also actually incurred the cost of a meal. The rates applicable are £5 where you are absent or 5 hours or more and £10 if absent for 10 or more hours. This will rise to £25 if absent for 15 hours or more and your time away goes beyond 8pm in the evening.
What happens if I file my VAT return late?
If your turnover is less than £150,000 then on the first occasion you are late you will get a polite letter reminding you that you are late. If you are late again within 12 months then you will get a default surcharge liability notice and escalating penalties. If your turnover is more than £150,000 then the default surcharge liability notice is generated, without a gentle reminder. The notice means that VAT returns and payments need to be submitted in time for the next 12 months or escalating penalties will take effect based on unpaid tax liabilities at the due date. If HMRC don’t have your return they will issue an assessment and estimate tax due and associated penalties.